F rom Plainfield City Hall
  Mayor Adrian O. Mapp
One Plainfield.  One Future.
  
We close Women's History Month with a special tribute to Plainfield native Barbara G. Johnson (b. 1928), who has devoted her entire adult life to public service. She served as Commissioner for the Housing Authority of Plainfield from 1973 to 2002. Her many accomplishments led to her appointment to the executive board of the NJ Association of Housing and Re-development Authorities (NJAHRA), which she later chaired. Mrs. Johnson served as chair of the Model Cities Council, on the executive board of the NJ Chapter of NAHRO and the Plainfield Human Relations Commission. She  currently serves on the Faith, Bricks & Mortar, Inc. Board of Trustees. The Housing Authority of Plainfield will honor Mrs. Johnson at a Black History Celebration Saturday, April 11, 2015, 3:00 pm to 7:00 p.m. , Plainfield High School. 
 
 I am proud to announce that among my weekly updates are the details of two significant accomplishments of my administration including the winner of a 2015 NJ Future Smart Growth Award; and the employment of 100 Plainfield residents as a result of a successful job fair held in conjunction with the U. S. Postal service (USPS) during the summer of 2014.   
  • The Affordable Care Act Fiver Years Later
  • Senator Menendez Unveils the America Star Program
  • Amicus Brief
  • Union County Fiscal Hearing
  • Plainfield Recipient of the Smart Growth Award
  • Helping Put Plainfielders Back to Work
  • Plainfield Road Closure Notice
  • Plainfield Education Update
  • Administration and Finance Update
  • Economic Development Update
  • Public Affairs and Safety Update
  • Workforce Development
  • Arts and Culture
  • Resources

Creating One Plainfield - One Future,

Mayor Adrian O. Mapp
City of Plainfield
The Affordable Care Act Five Years Later   
The Affordable Care Act: 5 Years Later
The Affordable Care Act: 5 Years Later

 

The health and well being of every Plainfield resident is important to me, and this includes access to healthcare. Our team's commitment to providing all Plainfield residents with access to healthcare was demonstrated during the last open enrollment period with the availability of a Plainfield navigator at the Plainfield City Hall Annex four days a week. The navigators helped residents through the application process and conducted healthcare education and awareness events.   

 

This week marks five years since the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  In the great City of Plainfield, since open enrollment closed last month, over 1,500 Plainfield residents have gained insurance through the marketplace.

 

You may find it interesting when you read the story covered on CNN, that one of the leading opponents of the Affordable Care Act, Senator Ted Cruz has had his spouse sign up for healthcare through the ACA.  Isn't that amazing? 

 

Click here to read the Op-Ed on the Five Year Anniversary of the ACA

  




 
Senator Menendez Unveils the America Star Program 
Union County, NJ -Union County Freeholder Vice Chairman Bruce Bergen (R) and Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski (L) joined U.S. Senator Robert Menendez at a press conference in Garwood where he unveiled new legislation designed to stimulate the growth of good, sustainable jobs. He highlighted businesses that both make American-made products and support American workers, with the hope of incentivizing others to follow their lead. The Senator toured the Pen Company of America (PCA) in Garwood. He had been joined by local elected officials, business owners, and advocates when he announced his plans to introduce the America Star Act.
 
Amicus Brief in Texas vs. United Sates Lawsuit

I have joined forty other mayors from around the country including Mayors Bill de Blasio (NYC) and Eric Garcetti (L.A.) in signing the Amicus Brief in the Texas vs. United States Lawsuit.  All forty Mayors are taking their support of President Barack Obama's immigration executive order to court. Through this Amicus Brief, a nationwide coalition of mayors will challenge the lawsuit brought on by twenty-five states, led by Republican lawmakers, who oppose the President's   executive order on immigration reform. The executive order, which many Republicans have insisted is illegal, will protect more than 4 million undocumented immigrants from deportation.

  

The suit was filed in Brownsville, Texas. The objective of the  Amicus, known more widely as a "friend of the court" brief, is to illustrate support for the president's legal case. The brief will explain the advantages of the order to cities including employment authorization for immigrants, increasing local tax revenue, stimulating economies, and keeping families together.


 

We will provide further updates as this important issue develops. 

 Union County Fiscal Hearing
Union County - Fiscal Hearing 2015 #1 - Union County, NJ
Union County - Fiscal Hearing 2015 #1 - Union County, NJ

I served on the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders from 2005-2007. The budget process is an important component of the Union County organization.  I believe it is important for Plainfield residents to be informed of financial decisions and the budget process that impacts the City of Plainfield.  You can view one of the fiscal hearings by watching the video above.
 
Helping Put 100 Plainfielders Back to Work

The last few years have been tough for many Plainfielders. The state of the economy resulted in many job cuts, loss of employment, and very few employment opportunities.  Given the current market and unemployment conditions, I knew our administrative team needed to foster hope in the community and within families by providing potential employment opportunities.   My Chief of Staff, John Stewart, was assigned the task of developing and leading an initiative to help put Plainfielders back to work. 

 

I am proud to announce the team delivered! On Thursday, March 26th we received the  results from the job fair we held in partnership with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) last summer. As a result of the partnership and job fair, 100 Plainfield residents were employed.  That is 100 less families having to worry about putting food on the table and what tomorrow may bring.  Hope is a powerful thing.

 

This is a perfect segway to our next save the date announcement:

 

USPS (U.S. Postal Service) Job Fair 2015

May 20, 2015

4pm - 7pm

Plainfield City Hall

 

For more information call 908-226-2509 or email: john.stewart@plainfieldnj.gov 

 

 
Smart Growth Awards
Experience the Queen City
Don't call it a comeback, Plainfield is being revitalized!  Spend a day in the Queen City and fall in love with our historic downtown, with it's 19th century architecture, eclectic shops, and diverse restaurants.  I am proud to announce that Plainfield is one of the  winners of the 2015 NJ Future Smart Growth Award. A beneficiary of  NJ Transit's new "One Seat Ride" to New York City's Penn Station,  downtown Plainfield has become New Jersey's newest transit village.   

Join us and become a part of a winning streak.  All of this has ushered in an era of redevelopment in our city including new loft apartments, the planned expansion of Union County College, and new mixed-use developments. Take a stroll down Front Street, grab a bite to eat at the award-winning Plainfield Donut Shop, spend a night on the town at Netherwood Bar and Grill, or tour one of our eight residential historic districts.  There is something for everyone in Plainfield.

Since 2002, New Jersey Future has honored smart planning and development statewide.  Their mission is to secure economic opportunity, community vitality, and quality of life for all New Jerseyans. 
 
Plainfield Education Update

Celebrate Spring!

Superintendent Anna Belin-Pyles invites the community of Plainfield to come out and celebrate the arrival of Spring with a free seed planting workshop at Plainfield's Washington Community School, 427 Darrow Avenue,  on Saturday, March 28, 2015, from 10 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. The workshop is free and open to the public.

 

Read Across America

Monday, March 30th, students from the Plainfield Academy for Arts & Advanced Studies (PAAAS) will be reading to Jefferson Elementary School students for Read Across America. During the event, green eggs and ham will be served to the students and the teachers who participate.  

 

Kick-off & Ribbon Cutting Ceremony April 1: Celebrating MONTH OF THE YOUNG CHILD Superintendent of Schools Anna Belin-Pyles, Mayor Adrian O. Mapp, and the Director of Early Childhood Program and Services Evelyn Motley, will Kick off the MONTH OF THE YOUNG CHILD with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the steps of Plainfield City Hall, 515 Watchung Avenue, at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, April 1, 2015. The month-long celebration of the Young Child will close with a FREE Family Fun Fair on Thursday, April 23. For more details and to participate in the Donate-A-Book Campaign on April 1st., please call Lumishka Cooper-Turnbull at 908-731-4200 x5099.

 

Schools Closed for Spring Recess

Superintendent Anna Belin-Pyles announces that Plainfield Public Schools will be closed for Spring Recess from Monday, April 6 to Friday, April 10. Students will be back to class on Monday, April 13.

 

Revised School Calendar 2014-2015 for Plainfield Students sets last day of school for June 19

Superintendent Anna Belin-Pyles announces that on March 17, 2015, the Plainfield Board of Education (BOE) approved a resolution to modify the Plainfield Public Schools' 2014-2015 School Calendar. The revised calendar sets June 19, 2015 as the last day of school for students; and June 24th as the last day for teachers.   The BOE also released the calendar for next the school year (2015-2016). To review it, please visit www.plainfieldnjk12.org. 

 
Administration and Finance Update
Homestead Benefit Credits 
The State of New Jersey recently sent the City of Plainfield  $1,240,086.94 in Homestead credits for 2,553 eligible property owners. The Tax Collectors Office is in the process of sending out homestead benefit adjusted tax bills that reflect account credits for the second quarter of 2015.  The Homestead credits were supposed  to be given in 2014, but were delayed until this year.
 
If you have any questions, you can reach the Tax Collector :
e-mail: david.marshall@plainfieldnj.gov 
Phone: (908)753-3214
 
Click Here for Diabetes Risk Test

Free Diabetes Self-Management Workshops
The national Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) project and NJ Department of Health & Human Services "Take Control of Your Health" Program, will be offering Free Diabetes Self-Management Workshops in Plainfield that aim to improve health outcomes for citizens with diabetes.
 
The Diabetes Self-Management Program was created by the Stanford School of Medicine. It is designed for adults age 55 and older. Participants of the free self-management workshops will receive a complimentary book and learn about diabetes and its risks, the role of diet and exercise, how to deal with pain and fatigue, managing  medications, maintaining willpower and much more.

The first set of workshops are scheduled at the Plainfield Senior Center each Wednesday from April 1 to May 6, 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Seniors only can register by calling Colin Baptiste at (908) 753-3506.

The second set of workshops are scheduled at the Plainfield Public Library each Friday from April 10 to May 15, 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

To register, contact Karen Hale at (72) 238-5570 ext: 2032 or khale@hqsi.org. 

Economic Development Update

The Office of Community Development, in partnership with New Jersey Small Business Development Center at Kean University, will present a Credit Clinic Seminar, a program addressing how critical credit issues impact the achievement of important and complex personal and business financial matters .  The seminar will be held from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm Thursday, April 16, 2015, at the Plainfield Public Library.

 

Join us and learn more about your credit profile. Space is limited. To register, please contact the Office of Community Development, Elaine S. Dunn-Brown, Director, at 908-753-3610.

 

 Click Here for More Information  

 

Public Affairs and Safety Update

Police Chaplain Basic Training Program. The Department of Public Affairs and Safety will host a Police Chaplain Basic Training Program on April 23-24, 2015 at the Plainfield Police Division.  This program is intended to prepare First Responder Chaplains for their specialized work within the community.  If you are a member of the Clergy and have a desire to partner with the police in offering more support to those in crisis, please email Director Carl N. Riley as soon as possible for more information.  His email address is carl.riley@plainfieldnj.gov  .    

 

SCAM 

The Plainfield Police Division is alerting citizens and small business owners of an identified crime scam that has emerged within the City of Plainfield.  Small business owners have reported receiving fraudulent phone calls from individual(s) misrepresenting themselves as PSE&G employees.  The scammer(s) then threatens to disconnect the victim's "outstanding" electric and/or gas service if immediate payment is not made.  The victim is further directed to purchase a pre-paid money card from a local convenience store and then to provide the card's number to the person who contacted them.

When PSE&G initiates a phone call to customers, customer-specific information is shared with the customer.  If this information is not provided, or is incorrect, the customer isn't speaking with a PSE&G representative.  Customers scheduled for disconnection due to nonpayment receive written notice on their past due bill at least 10 days in advance.  If a PSE&G customer has doubts about the legitimacy of a telephone call, especially one in which payment is requested, immediately hang up and contact PSE&G directly at 1-800-436-PSEG (7734); or visit a local PSE&G Customer Service Center.  The customer should then notify the Plainfield Police Division via (908) 753-3131(non-emergency).

Workforce Development
USPS is Hiring - Save the Date! USPS (U.S. Postal Service) Job Fair
May 20, 2015    4pm-7pm
Plainfield City Hall

Job Connection March 16-22
 
Plainfield Learning Center
What Are Municipal Bonds?
What are Municipal Bonds? | Fidelity
What are Municipal Bonds? | Fidelity
 
Learn the details behind general obligation municipal bonds - what they are, why they are created, and how they work - with this illustrated video by Fidelity.
 
Economic Development in other Municipalities  
How REAL Economic Development Happens.m4v 
How REAL Economic Development Happens
 
Executive Director of EDCO (Economic Development for Central Oregon), Roger Lee, talks about the A to Z problem solving necessary for good economic development. He covers how EDCO approaches company recruitment, expansion of existing businesses, and the development of startups.
Plainfield Road Closure Notice 
Please note the roadway closure schedule for Park Avenue and Watchung Avenue:
 
  • Park Avenue - March 30 through April 19 - open Park Avenue on April 20
  • Watchung Avenue - April 20 through July 20 (approximately 3 months)
  • There will be more closures after July 20, but that will be updated at a later date
 
Arts and Culture
Plainfield Easter Egg Hunt 

March 28, 2015
10:00 a.m. to 12:00 Noon
Cedarbrook Park (Cricket Field near Shakespeare Garden)

Click Here for More Information 

  

The Plainfield Symphony  

The Plainfield Symphony's 95th Season opens with the presentation of

  "Bernstein on Broadway" at 7:00 p.m. Saturday, March 28th, 2015, featuring special guest Jamie Bernstein, conductor Charles Prince, Grammy Nominee Alexander Silber and Will Reynolds. The program includes symphonic dances and vocal selections from Westside Story, On the Town, Wonderful Town, and Candide.

  

  

Frontiers International Westry Horne Cultural and Heritage Series Schedule 

The purpose of this series is to educate and provide space for intergenerational dialogues on topics of African American history and culture.

 

Click Here for Complete Schedule
 

NEW CHILDREN'S LIBRARY HOURS
The Children's Library
will now open at 11:00 a.m. Monday through Thursday.
 
Resources

United Way Internet Essentials
In partnership with Comcast and Union County College, United Way of Greater Union County is proud and excited to announce the launch of Internet Essentials Computer Classes in Plainfield. With the help of our partners, we will successfully increase computer literacy among our residents.    

Classes are free to all Plainfield residents and will consist of (10) 3 hour hands-on workshops focused on the following:
 
*      Introduction to Computers
*      Introduction to the Internet
*      Keeping Children Safe on the Internet
*      Essential Email Skills
*      Basic MS Word Skills
 
We invite you to share the attached flyer with anyone interested in learning more about computers.  To register, please have individuals contact call 908-353-7171 x137 or 100 or email  info@uwguc.org. 

Click Here for More Information

Computer Malware and E-mail Hack Attacks: What to Do Fast

Quick Videos List Important Steps

You may know the experience: Your e-mail account starts behaving oddly, or your computer is slowing down and acting up. You may have been hacked, or gotten a virus. Would you know how to address an e-mail hack, secure your device, and protect your identity?

Watch these two short videos which go over the critical first steps you can take to minimize the damage and get back in control.

Want more information? Visit OnGuardOnline.gov for information on:

Or download this free publication on protecting your computer and personal information.


Kraft Recalls Macaroni and Cheese Boxed Dinners

What you need to know:
  • Kraft Foods Group is recalling approximately 242,000 boxed dinners which may contain small pieces of metal.
  • The recall is limited to the 7.25-oz. size of the Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Boxed Dinner Original Flavor with the "Best When Used By" dates of September 18, 2015 through October 11, 2015, with the code "C2" directly below the date on each individual box.

For more details on this recall, read this release from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). For other food recalls visit foodsafety.gov/recalls 

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AARP Tax Preparation

AARP tax counselors will provide local members with free tax counseling services from Monday, February 2nd to Wednesday, April 15th from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Appointments are required. Please Call 908-753-3506 to make your appointment.

Bring the following to your appointment:
* 2013 federal and state income tax return if you filed
* 2014 federal and state income tax  booklet
* 1099 SSA and/or 1099 Forms
* W-2 Forms per employer
* 1098 Form if you own a mortgage
* Social Security card for all dependents
* ID for anyone ages 18 and over.
* All child care and dependent care provider info, including employer's name, SS # or EIN #.
* Your 2014 Tax Receipt
* All rent receipts or total annual rent paid if you are a tenant.

If you're interested in having a PTR done, please have your proof of taxes paid completed by the City Hall Tax Office prior to making an appointment.


Help Us Spread the Word
Please have family and friends sign up to receive these important weekly updates.  They can sign up by calling (908) 753-3310 and providing their email address.
Have a Great Weekend!

Volume 2 - Issue 13